2019-2020 We the Students Essay Prompt
What does civil discourse mean to you?
Civil discourse is a concept that goes beyond a simple dictionary definition, and understanding it involves a combination of personal experience and ‘big ideas.’ Perhaps it is something you recognize from an occurrence in your own life. Maybe you can easily recognize when it is missing. Differing perspectives are a key part of learning, of democracies, and of civil society. For this essay, we ask you not only share your comprehension of what civil discourse is meant to be but to also relate what it looks like when it works – and when it doesn’t – and why. Perhaps you will choose to include mention of a time when you, yourself, were part of an exchange intended to understand something – how did you go about it? We encourage you to bring emotion, creativity, specific examples (including current events), and well-researched facts into what you write. A good essay will demonstrate how civil discourse is not just an abstract idea, but is, in fact, action inspired by constitutional principles, and demonstrated through civic virtues. We want to know what you think civil discourse truly means.
The winners of this year’s contest will receive:
1st Place – $7,500 and a scholarship to our 2020 Constitutional Academy in Washington, D.C.
Runners Up – 5 prizes at $1,500 each
Honorable Mentions – 8 prizes at $500 each
2018-2019 Grand Prize Winner: Chelsea Rackley
Read her essay HERE.
Runners Up: Haylee Sovell, Kaitlyn Koster, Diego Bigelow-Gonzalo, Ryan Dockery, Lauren Menke, and Jenna Hren
Honorable Mention: Jentry Myers, Kenny Brown, Lucinda Eberly, Sophie Van Duin, Chloe Hudson, Rebekah Stranger, Catherine Myers, and Felix Moisand